Asbestos Testing for Floor Tiles
If floor tiles are more than 30 years old it’s likely you’ll want to replace them. However, asbestos testing is essential before you rip them up.
Tiles of this age often contain white asbestos (chrysolite) set in polymer. They are not particularly high risk unless damaged, resulting in the release of the asbestos fibres. Business and homeowners often wonder whether to replace the floor tiles or just leave them where they are. Here is some information that might help you decide.
DAMAGED ASBESTOS FLOOR TILES
Over a 30 year period you can imagine that high traffic and regular cleaning is likely to wear the tiles. More damage can occur when furniture is moved around or when rooms have been renovated without covering the tiles properly. Exposure to sunlight is also a factor to consider because it makes them vitreous. Long term exposure can cause asbestos floor tiles to weaken and crumble underfoot. All of this damaging activity can cause fibres to become airborne.
Before you think about doing anything with this potentially harmful floor covering, invest in an inexpensive, asbestos self-testing kit. The results of tests from the samples you take will define what happens next.
An asbestos self testing kit can be with you within 24 hours of ordering and samples tested rapidly. There is no hold up waiting for an available surveyor, which could create unnecessary delays in your project.
ASBESTOS TESTING RESULTS
Samples tested will reveal whether there is a high, medium, low or negative asbestos risk. For example, if the test comes back as low risk you might want to get an expert in to repair any damage. The same applies to medium risk. With both low and medium results you could consider laying new flooring over the existing tiles. However, with a high risk result it’s always worth calling licensed professionals to remove and dispose of the material.
OTHER HAZARDS OF ASBESTOS FLOORING
If you love the retro look and want to keep low risk flooring when it has been repaired bear in mind the following:
Old asbestos tiling was often laid in bathrooms and kitchens, both being areas where floors can become wet. Renowned for not being anti-slip some people remember slipping on them and landing with a heavy thud.
Whilst the retro look may be in vogue, you’re best advised to buy new flooring with a retro design. This is particularly pertinent if an accident happens in the workplace. Can your business afford a hefty compensation claim? This type of floor is not good for children or the elderly who are more prone to accidents.
If you would like to know more about asbestos testing please don’t hesitate to contact Asbestos Sampling. Our friendly team provides 24/7 support so you can call us any time on Freephone 0800 368 88 49. Be safe rather than sorry!